Second-hand batteries from electric vehicles such as buses could drastically cut the price of lithium-ion-based storage, research predicts. Photo: www.animam.photography
By Jason Deign
Lithium-ion’s potential to dominate the stationary storage battery sector may be stronger than previously thought, according to the implications of a new study.
Research published last week by the analyst firm Bloomberg New Energy Finance (BNEF) shows a glut of second-hand lithium-ion (Li-ion) batteries from the auto industry could cut battery storage costs significantly.
By 2018, says Used EV batteries for stationary storage: second-life supply & costs, the cost of repurposing batteries for second-life applications could go down to as little as USD$49 per kWh.
This compares to a cost of roughly $300 per kWh for new batteries at the moment, and $160 for lowest-cost battery chemistries such as the zinc hybrid cathode technology being commercialised by Eos Energy Storage.
Given that BNEF expects around 10GWh of capacity from used electric vehicle batteries to be entering into the stationary storage market by 2025, second-life applications could deal a real blow to the prospects for non-Li-ion chemistries. Read more →
The UK’s departure from the European Union is making storage more expensive.
By Jason Deign
One immediate result of the UK’s decision to leave the European Union is likely to be higher energy storage costs, Energy Storage Report has learned.
The June 23 vote to split with the Union, led by England and Wales, sent sterling tumbling against the dollar. Each pound was worth USD$1.48 on the day of the referendum, versus $1.31 yesterday, an almost 12% drop.
Sterling has also fallen almost 9% against the euro, from €1.30 on June 23 to €1.19 yesterday. This means the cost of importing storage technologies has likely risen by around 10% in the last month.
Nor is it clear whether sterling’s malaise is likely to improve over time.
Joseph Wright of Pound Sterling Forecastthis week said: “Moving forward I’m expecting the financial data to continue to disappoint on release, mostly due to the uncertainty created by the Brexit. Read more →
This five-year chart of Brent crude prices shows the pain oil companies have been experiencing since mid-2014… and why they might be looking to diversify into energy storage (chart: CNBC).
By Jason Deign
The last week has seen two Big Oil firms move into energy storage as continuing low prices for crude force petroleum sector players to diversify.
On Monday the French oil giant Total announced a friendly takeover of Saft Groupe, which specialises in batteries for the transport, industry and defence sectors.
The €950m purchase represents a 38.3% premium on Saft’s share price on the close of business the Friday before the announcement. It is also 41.9% above Saft’s weighted average share price over the previous six months, Total said.
“The acquisition of Saft is part of Total’s ambition to accelerate its development in the fields of renewable energy and electricity, initiated in 2011 with the acquisition of SunPower,” said Patrick Pouyanné, Total’s chairman and CEO.
“It will notably allow us to complement our portfolio with electricity storage solutions, a key component of the future growth of renewable energy.” Read more →
ABB will provide Enel Distribuzione with a battery energy storage system that will enable the utility to study the benefits of using such facilities in its distribution network. The system will be installed at the Contrada Dirillo distribution substation in Ragusa province in southern Sicily.
It can provide 2MW of power for up 30 minutes and will be housed in three factory-tested containers, two containing lithium-ion batteries and a third accommodating the power conversion and energy management systems. The control system enables local, and remote control and monitoring of the installation from Enel’s network control centre.
The power converter transforms the alternating current power used in the network to the direct current power needed by the batteries and vice versa.
NGK is known for its sodium-sulphur (NaS) batteries. Sumitomo is working on vanadium redox flow batteries. Photo credit: NGK Insulators
In a week where continued fears over radiation leakage call the future of the country’s nuclear fleet into question, there is at least one piece of good energy news coming out of Japan. NGK Insulators and Sumitomo Electric Industries have both been chosen by the Japanese Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry to find ways of driving down the costs of energy storage. Read more →
In the future, energy storage could be as important as style when shopping for clothes. Photo credit: Oxfordian World
What’s the best place to store electricity? Many solutions are being suggested, from household fuel cell energy storage units to your electric vehicle’s lithium-ion battery. But a fascinating article in Nanowerk explores the idea that we’ll one day be powering our wearable electronics with electricity generated and stored in the clothes on our back. Read more →
Analyst group Bloomberg New Energy Finance (BNEF) is predicting China could spend between USD$164bn and $192bn on energy storage between now and 2030. The figures are from a study released this week that considers four possible future energy scenarios for the Asian giant. BNEF’s favoured scenario, dubbed the ‘New Normal’, would see energy storage investments topping $166bn. Read more →
As usual, we have been delighted by the volume of news on energy storage and related areas in the last week. And as usual, we lack the resources to cover them all. So here are the headlines – linked to stories in other media.